PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Moments before jury empanelment was scheduled to begin Wednesday in the federal court trial of a Jamaica Plain, Mass., man charged with participating in a heroin trafficking conspiracy, the defendant pleaded guilty as charged. Emanuel Hilario, 31, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin. Hilario faces between five and forty years in federal prison, to be followed by a minimum of four years of supervised release.
The guilty plea, which was accepted by U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., was announced by Steven W. Derr, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha.
According to information presented to the Court by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra R. Hebert, in 2009 agents from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force developed information through the use of electronic surveillance and other investigative measures of Hilario’s participation in the conspiracy which included the distribution of large quantities of heroin.
On August 14, 2009, agents monitored two telephone calls between Emanuel Hilario and a co-conspirator in which they discussed the sale of about 350 grams of heroin. Agents were also watching the same day as the two met. The government also obtained telephone records revealing a total of 193 calls between the defendant and two others alleged to be participants in the conspiracy from June 24 to August 17, 2009.
Had the matter gone to trial, the government also would have introduced evidence of other narcotics-related telephone calls, additional surveillance testimony, evidence of two seizures of heroin that were made during the investigation, and evidence of numerous photographs and/or video of the defendant with a co-conspirator during the relevant time period.